Ciao Italia: My Lifelong Food Adventures in Italy
Mary Ann's newest book contains over 150 recipes, 60 gorgeous food photos, and many scenic pictures of Italy taken by Mary Ann on her travels through the years.
2 pounds meaty pork ribs
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Slices of hearty Italian bread, at least 1/2-inch thick
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan; you need a pan big enough to hold the ribs in a single layer. While the oil is heating, slice the pork between the bones to produce individual ribs. Put the ribs, fat side down, in the oil to brown. When brown, turn the ribs over to brown the other side. Season with salt and pepper. Put a slice of bread on top of each rib and press down on it so that it comes in contact with the whole length of the rib; you want it to absorb as much of the flavor as possible while the ribs cook. After about 5 minutes, turn the slices of bread over so the other side is also flavored with the pan juices.
Add about a half cup of water to the pan to ensure that the meat stays moist as it finishes cooking. Cover and simmer for a half hour. Check midway through cooking and add more water if necessary.
When the ribs are done, arrange the bread slices on a platter and put a rib on top of each slice. Serve immediately.
Note: If your ribs are small or not as meaty as those Ernesto used, you may need to reduce the cooking time slightly. Ernesto says this is often served with whole baked garlic bulbs.